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clubgowi

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  1. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from Kunal888 in 2018 World Cup Qualification European Section   
    World Cup Qualifiers: Northern Ireland - Azerbaijan

    Azerbaijan are unbeaten through three group games and have yet to concede, keeping clean sheets against both Norway and the Czech Republic and holding a surprise second place in Group C behind big favourites Germany. It is only the second playoff spot that is realistically up for grabs and the visitors would take a very firm grip on it, were they to win in Belfast. Northern Ireland are not exactly full of goals and the absences of Stuart Dallas and Jamie Ward lessen their offensive threat and without Ward, the Irish are an incredibly bad 1-9-16 in the last six years, the win coming over the Faroe Islands and that sequence included a 1-1 home draw with Azerbaijan. They have been starting with Josh Magennis up front, with Ward in the secondary role in recent games, Magennis had just 28 goals in the SPL in five seasons and is hardly banging them in regularly for Charlton Athletic this season in the third tier of English football (a goal every 400 minutes) and it is easy to make a case for Azerbaijan keeping the Irish fairly quiet. A goal for the visitors should be enough for a point (aside from against San Marino the Irish have only scored more than one in 2 of 12 starts) and they might not even need that and this game feels like it has been priced wrongly and based on what was perceived as a strong Euro showing for Northerm Ireland, where they actually lost 3/4 and they have failed to score in six of their last eight starts. Azerbaijan have two teams in the group stages of the Europa League, with domestic champions Qarabag, who supply eight of this squad, in good position to qualify and this is clearly a footballing nation on the rise.

    Azerbaijan +0.5 ball 2.21 asian line/Sportmarket

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  2. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in EFL Trophy > Nov 8th and 9th   
    Checkatrade Trophy: Sunderland U23 - Notts County

    Hosts are in with a point, County need to win. The visitors will surely be up for a visit to the Stadium of Light, even in front of one man and his dog, five of their six league wins this season have come on the road . Head coach John Sheridan said:"I don't expect the crowd to be big, but it's a beautiful stadium and it's a lovely pitch to go and play football on."It's a game we want to win, and hopefully the players will go and do that. "We know if we win we go through. "The players know that."Not many people will know much about their players, but I went to watch them against Rochdale and they've got some good, bright, young players."Technically they are very good and it will be a good test for us. "But we will have more experience and hopefully we can affect the game the way we want to."At Premier League academies they get all these luxuries – it's a different world."But I think they will respect coming up against the teams from League One and League Two, they will realise it's a tough old game."It is totally different to academy football and I think it's good for the younger players from Premier League clubs to see what it takes to earn a living at that level.

    It says a lot about Sheridan that he personally travelled five hours on a midweek night to watch future opposition in this competition and he is not going to put in that kind of effort and not demand at least the same from his players and they should make their experience tell.

    Notts County +0.25 ball 2.01 asian line/Sportmarket

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  3. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in Champions League > Nov 1/2   
    Champions League: Borussia M. - Celtic

    Celtic were run ragged in the first leg and lost 2-0, the magin of defeat should have been greater and aside from their performance at home to Manchester City and England-Scotland match ups do have a different dynamic, they look some way short of the quality required to compete at this level currently . Kolo Toure made two horrendous mistakes, he will miss today's game, which might well be a bonus for the visitors, but the loss of left back Kieran Tierney most definitely will not be. The youngster is ever present this season and described by most watchers as their best defender . With BMG surely looking again to press and harry Celtic into mistakes and the Scottish champions with no option but to attack and that is the only way they can play, when you win 77% (last four seasons) of all league games, you have little experience of setting up defensively. They need to win this to get back into (at least) Europa League contention and BMG will be similarly minded as three points is going to guarantee EL football and would actually take them above Manchester City and up into second, unless the Premier League leaders also beat Barcelona ( see below). BMG will be stronger tonight than for the first leg, Celtic will not sit back too long and should be even more vulnerable defensively and one goal, should see this get very stretched.

    "over" 3 goals 2.04 asian line/Sportmarket

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  4. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from Sir Puntalot in NFL > October   
    NFL: San Diego Chargers @ Denver Broncos

    Chargers are improving and will be confident no doubt after a 21-13 win over the Broncos just 17 days ago, but at home, on a quick turnaround against a team coming off their first loss of the season, is not the same as playing in Mile High with the Broncos back on track after a 27-9 win over the Texans. Chargers did follow up at at the Falcons last week, which looks good on paper, but they were 17 points down at one stage and needed 450 + yards of offense to win a game in overtime and this Denver defense will not allow that many in their own stadium, or blow a double digit lead. Also, they do not lose twice to a divisional opponent, especially one who is not going to win the section and there is the small matter of revenge and that San Diego are not very good on the road, where they have lost 11/13. Broncos have won the last three h2h meetings in Colorado, all by 7 + points and with Denver suddenly a big running team with full back Andy Janovich opening huge holes for the running backs who appear to have realised later than most what an asset the 23yo is, punching massive openings for them to run through. I see this as a great match up for Denver despite the recent loss and 7 points as the minimum margin again.

    Denver Broncos - 4 points 2.05 Pinnacle/Vegas Line/Sportmarket

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  5. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in Weekend > Oct 27-31   
    Brazil Serie A: Sport Recife - Ponte Preta

    Huge game for Sport, they have three of their next four on the road, including trips to two teams battling for Copa spots and sit just two points above the drop zone, with the teams immediately above them in the table having started to pick up their game(s) and points. I have spoken many times about how difficult a venue this is, Recife is a very long trip for almost every team in Brazil ( 5,400 km round trip for PP) and once here, conditions are often stifling and you are asked very different questions by both mind and body. I have no evidence, but I bet there have been a few yellow cards collected on purpose over the years, so that players miss this trip to play Sport. By the way, PP top scorer Roger sits this one out after picking up a yellow in the last game !! The hosts have a 60.27% home win record over the last four seasons, which even in a country where homes "always" run north of 50% is very impressive and to give it some context, is identical to that of Cruzeiro, who are two time champions over the same period.

    Ponte Preta still have a small chance of top 6, but 11 of their 13 wins have come at home and they will have to gamble a little more than usual on the road today and that should play into the hands of Sport. The visitors have not won here in recent times and have conceded seven without scoring on their last three away days and anything other than three points for Recife would both surprise and leave them in trouble.

    Sport Recife -0.75 ball 2.21 asian line/Sportmarket

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  6. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from Sir Puntalot in Weekend > Oct 27-31   
    Brazil Serie A: Sport Recife - Ponte Preta

    Huge game for Sport, they have three of their next four on the road, including trips to two teams battling for Copa spots and sit just two points above the drop zone, with the teams immediately above them in the table having started to pick up their game(s) and points. I have spoken many times about how difficult a venue this is, Recife is a very long trip for almost every team in Brazil ( 5,400 km round trip for PP) and once here, conditions are often stifling and you are asked very different questions by both mind and body. I have no evidence, but I bet there have been a few yellow cards collected on purpose over the years, so that players miss this trip to play Sport. By the way, PP top scorer Roger sits this one out after picking up a yellow in the last game !! The hosts have a 60.27% home win record over the last four seasons, which even in a country where homes "always" run north of 50% is very impressive and to give it some context, is identical to that of Cruzeiro, who are two time champions over the same period.

    Ponte Preta still have a small chance of top 6, but 11 of their 13 wins have come at home and they will have to gamble a little more than usual on the road today and that should play into the hands of Sport. The visitors have not won here in recent times and have conceded seven without scoring on their last three away days and anything other than three points for Recife would both surprise and leave them in trouble.

    Sport Recife -0.75 ball 2.21 asian line/Sportmarket

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  7. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in UK Midweek > Oct 24-26   
    Scottish Premier League: Hamilton - Aberdeen

    Aberdeen have won six in a row in all competitions, a run which has taken them up to second in the SPL, they will be looking to stay there tonight, ahead of a home game with leaders Celtic at the weekend. Hamilton are in 10th place, which is where they finished last season and you suspect that if you offered that to them again, they would snatch your hand off for it and another year of survival. Teams have got used to the Tigerturf surface here now and Hamilton have won just 7 of 33 home SPL starts since January 1st 2015, they have been helped in that regard this season by an "easy" schedule so far and have yet to face one of the "big 4" at home. They have also lost their last four home midweek games, they entertain basement club Dundee on Saturday, that is the far more win-able fixture and in terms of staying in the SPL, the more important of this week's two games.

    This is a great opportunity for the Dons to put some real pressure on Celtic , who played the Old Firm game on Sunday and a Champions League tie last midweek, they do not play until tomorrow and meet Aberdeen at lunchtime on Saturday, with the return game in Germany with BMG next Tuesday ! But all that will mean far less, if the visitors do not claim all three points this evening.

    Aberdeen -1 ball 2.07 asian line/Sportmarket

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  8. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from Sir Puntalot in JLeague 2016   
    JLeague: Urawa Reds - Albirex Niigata

    Urawa have dominated this series in recent years, with an 8-2-0 record in Saitama, along with seven clean sheets and a very similar 8-1-1 from ten starts in Niigata, also keeping Albirex scoreless in seven. So, in the last 20 h2h meetings, Urawa have an 80% win rate and have not conceded in 70%. The hosts currently look as strong as at any time during the course of those previous meetings and they will be looking to extend their advantage in the Stage 1 league table and seal their place in the post season as quickly as possible,, leaving them free to them concentrate fully on the AFC Champions League instead of Stage 2 later in the year.

    Albirex have had a tough schedule and playing Kashima Antlers, Gamba Osaka and then Urawa Reds, all back to back inside ten days, with two on the road , is about as difficult as it gets in J-League and they will have spent a lot of time chasing the ball, come the final whistle tomorrow evening. 8 of their 14 goals this season have come from Rafael da Silva and Tasuya Tanaka, the first is injured and former Urawa striker Tanaka has only played more than 75 minutes twice in the last three seasons and has already been asked to play more minutes than he did in the whole of 2015 this season. They need to score, as they are incredibly leaky at the other end of the pitch, only relegated Shimizu S-Pulse conceded more last season and that trend has continued and they have already given up a J-League high 20 this time round, at the rate of 2.0 per game on the road. The core of their defence, which conceded eight in two visits ( league and cup) to Urawa last season is unchanged and they do not have appeared to have addressed those issues in the interim.

    Urawa Reds -1.25 ball 1.98 asian line/sportmarket

     
  9. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from Sir Puntalot in Brazil Serie A > Oct 12th - 14th   
    Brazil Serie A: Atletico Mineiro - America Mineiro


    I previewed Atletico's last start, a visit to Corinthians .........

    "Corinthians form has nosedived, they looked firm title contenders through the first 14 games, had 28 points in the bag and were in second place, they have taken just 13 points from the last 14 and are down in 7th, seven points off Copa Libertadores pace and with six teams above them. They might soon be in a position where it will all be about the Copa do Brasil for them and it is possible they will play and might already be doing so, with less caution than we usually expect. AMG are third, four points clear of Santos in 4th and can afford to gamble at present and look to push on for the title. They are currently five adrift of leaders Palmeiras, but have still to host them and a late challenge is far from off the table . They collected 20 points from their first 14 starts, a whopping 32 from the second, which is a 27 point swing with Corinthians and if they had played at this level from the get-go, they would hold a seven point lead at the top of the table, which illustrates how well they have played since, well, mid June, since when they have collected more points than anyone.

    They are fast starters on the road and have a +6 first half goal difference.

    AMG are without defensive midfielder Rafael Carioca tonight, he is away with the national team, but the visitors are 6-1-0 in Serie A starts without him. His absence is offset , IMO, by Corinthians losing right back Fagner , they lost 2-0 at home to Palmeiras in the last game he missed with replacement Leo Principe being run ragged and eventually getting sent off after two yellow cards."

    They drew that 0-0, a result which leaves them in third, 4 and 7 points respectively behind Flamengo and Palmeiras with nine rounds left to play. Third carries with it a place in the Copa Libertadores group stage, but 4th-6th will now get you in to the first stage and that does ease the pressure. Also, the top two both have difficult games today and Atletico have still to host both, so it would be very early to give up on title ambitions.

    America are booked for a quick return to the second tier after promotion last season and are 13 points from safety and propping up the rest of Serie A. However, we can surely expect them to be up for this, in their last derby game of the season and if they can end Atletico's title ambitions, that would be a bonus.

    However, 32 points separate these two, which is more than 1.1 per game and is a true reflection of the difference in quality and Atletico are taking this incredibly seriously and given the home side full respect. There was talk of their four international players being eased back, but Lucas Pratto, Rafael Carioca, Cazares and Erazo have all been rushed back from CONMEBOL World Cup action and go straight into the squad.

    America have conceded two or more goals in 6 of their last 7 starts without keeper Fernado Leal who is suspended and come into this game additionally weakened defensively. They will have to open up at some stage and Atletico can make it 3/3 at home to bottom four teams by a 3-0 scoreline.

    Atletico MG -1.25 goals 2.0 asian line/Sportmarket

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  10. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in Brazil Serie A > Oct 5th - 9th   
    Brazil Serie A: Atletico Paranaense - Chapecoense

    Atletico are 6th, six points behind Santos in fourth place, but with 4th and 5th meeting ( see above) they will close up on one or both with all three points this evening and given that they are 11-2-1 at home, where they have conceded only five goals and with 54% +home wins in the league, it is difficult not to see them as value to do so at close to even money ! They actually have very good fixtures remaining and their next eight starts come against teams with an average league placing of 12.62.

    Chapecoense have performed much better on the road than we have come to expect from them in recent campaigns, but such is the way of these things, that their usually very solid home form has suffered ! However, their are safe(ish) in mid table, have a Copa Sudamerican two legged semi final this month and I would expect them to be selective about which matches they really focus on from here on in, basically the Copa and home games, where they owe supporters a performance or two.

    Atletico are a fantastic 7-0-0 at home when level at half time and waiting for the break is definitely an option, but I will officially go with...........

    Atletico Paranaense -0.5 ball 2.01 asian line/Sportmarket

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  11. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in September Cups   
    England League Cup: AFC Bournemouth - Preston North End

    I got a very close up look at Preston North End on Saturday, I have to be honest and say that they did not deserve to lose 5-0 to the mighty, mighty Bees, but overall, they played just about where I ranked them ahead of the game, which is definitely below last season's 11th place finish . They have some very big clubs (by Championship standards) below and immediately above them in the table, they could quickly get into real trouble and this is not a league in which it is easy to play catch up, games being ultra competitive, with no easy fixtures and they have a vital "bottom six" clash with local rivals Wigan Athletic (stadiums are just 30 minutes apart) on FRIDAY night and that surely has to take priority.

    So, PNE played at Griffin Park on Saturday, where they were eventually run ragged, now make an even longer trip down to the South Coast on Tuesday on face a Premier League side and play a game in front of the television cameras that they dare not lose in three days time !

    I spoke about the pressure that Simon Grayson was under last week, but he knows that it has to be all about the league and he made 11 changes for the last EFL cup tie and is very likely to go down a similar route this evening. His team started both halves strongly on Saturday and if they had equalised at 0-1 (huge save from Bentley in the Brentford goal, it could have been a different story..... see, I can be unbiased !) but collapsed once the second goal was conceded and the Bees ran riot.

    I assume Bournemouth will rotate too, but they have a very strong squad and can field two largely similar first teams IMO. Easy home win !

    Bournemouth -1 ball 2.06 asian line/Sportmarket

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  12. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from immortal-- in Ligue 1 & 2 > September 2016   
    France Ligue2: Bourg - Le Havre

    Bourg-en-Bresse are back to their free and easy ways, play a very open style, are comfortable on the ball when in possession, quite pleasing on the eye and look vulnerable when defending, in other words, they are fun to watch ! Last season their games produced an average 2.79 goals and only relegated Creteil conceded more. They met a pair of teams with a defend first, ask questions later approach in their two opening games and it took a while to return to normal service, but their last five starts have seen 20 goals with both scoring in each and any time they face a team who will not sit back, we should see goals and plenty of them. The two league meetings with Le Havre last season produced nine goals with eight for HAC and it is hard to see the visitors coming with just a point in mind. They have lost their way after a great start to their season and they are now five league and cup games without a win, through which they have conceded 10 goals in three home starts (!) and we are talking about the pre season promotion favourites here.

    There is no doubt that Le Havre are the stronger squad, but BEBP probably have a little more confidence right now and do play with a bit of a swagger, both to score........1-3 feels about right, but best value has to be ........

    over 2.5 goals 2.16 asian line/Sportmarket

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  13. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in Serie A & B > September 2016   
    Serie A: AC Milan - Udinese

    Milan won 3-2 their last game on home ground, should have been 3-1-/4-1, but could easily have ended 3-3 with Torino missing a late penalty, they then lost 4-2 at Napoli and giving up six goals and a mised penalty is hardly the dream defensive start and whilst they have had 15 days to work on solutions, they clearly need it. Suspensions today to Mbaye Niang and Juraj Kucka are hardly ideal and combined with the injury to Andrea Bertolacci and knocks to others, that leaves them very shorthanded in the middle of the park. Upfront, Niang has been very influential since breaking into the team with six goals and six assists in 18 starts and Milan won just two from 11 when he picked up an injury and was sidelined at the end of last season.

    Udinese have avoided defeat in half of their last ten league and cup visits to the San Siro to play Milan and that alone suggest value in the quote for the visitors, they will travel a little nervously after an opening day mauling at Roma, but have steadied the ship with three points and a cleansheet at home to Empoli and can take a point and a goal or two today (3.75 to score 2+ feels big).

    Udinese +0.75 ball 2.08 asian line/Sportmarket

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  14. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in Ligue 1 & 2 > September 2016   
    France Ligue2: Bourg - Le Havre

    Bourg-en-Bresse are back to their free and easy ways, play a very open style, are comfortable on the ball when in possession, quite pleasing on the eye and look vulnerable when defending, in other words, they are fun to watch ! Last season their games produced an average 2.79 goals and only relegated Creteil conceded more. They met a pair of teams with a defend first, ask questions later approach in their two opening games and it took a while to return to normal service, but their last five starts have seen 20 goals with both scoring in each and any time they face a team who will not sit back, we should see goals and plenty of them. The two league meetings with Le Havre last season produced nine goals with eight for HAC and it is hard to see the visitors coming with just a point in mind. They have lost their way after a great start to their season and they are now five league and cup games without a win, through which they have conceded 10 goals in three home starts (!) and we are talking about the pre season promotion favourites here.

    There is no doubt that Le Havre are the stronger squad, but BEBP probably have a little more confidence right now and do play with a bit of a swagger, both to score........1-3 feels about right, but best value has to be ........

    over 2.5 goals 2.16 asian line/Sportmarket

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  15. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from four-leaf in Champions League 2016/17 Group Stage Round 1 (13th &14th Sep)   
    Champions League: Manchester City - Borussia Monchengladbach

    Few coaches in this competition have as much Champions League experience as Pep Guardiola, in seven years as head coach, he is a perfect seven time semi finalist and two time winner. City made the semis last season and anything less this time round is likely to be seen as failure. Guardiola is not afraid to make the big decisions and Yaya Toure and Joe Hart were quickly made aware that their time had passed, John Stones, Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus, Ilkay Gundogan, Claudio Brava and Nolito were signed for a collective 200m € and the club have had a major make over. However, his biggest influence has been on the training pitch, where the work is said to have been on another level and it is easy to see that on the pitch, we are only four games in, but at times and in each, although perhaps not yet for 90 minutes, they have played football the like of which we have not seen before in the Premier League. It might seem very early to say that, but you only had to watch the opening 45 minutes of the Manchester derby on Saturday, through which they totally outclassed United, to realise how good they are, or rather, can be and this is only just the very beginning. The effect he has had on Raheem Sterling and John Stones is already apparent and tonight they will have a hungry and in form Sergio Aguero, who is serving a domestic ban, back in the line up.

    BMG are two weeks behind in terms of real match fitness, a light year away with the respective squads and whilst they will have learned plenty from a group stage appearance, they will not take much confidence from the two games with City last season, both of which they lost , conceding six goals and the Manchester side look on a higher plane right now. BMG are coming off a 3-1 defeat at newly promoted Freiburg at the weekend, they went "full strength" there, with 10 of the 11 starters who faced Leverkusen on opening day and started well enough, led at the break, but fell apart late with some shambolic defending and this has the potential to get ugly tonight.

    Manchester City -1.5 ball 2.11 asian line/Sportmarket

    4.0 for City to score four or more, something they did here at the Etihad in this fixture last season feels too big, given the offensive firepower of the hosts and how qucikly BMG crumbled on Saturday

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  16. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in Champions League 2016/17 Group Stage Round 1 (13th &14th Sep)   
    Champions League: Manchester City - Borussia Monchengladbach

    Few coaches in this competition have as much Champions League experience as Pep Guardiola, in seven years as head coach, he is a perfect seven time semi finalist and two time winner. City made the semis last season and anything less this time round is likely to be seen as failure. Guardiola is not afraid to make the big decisions and Yaya Toure and Joe Hart were quickly made aware that their time had passed, John Stones, Leroy Sane, Gabriel Jesus, Ilkay Gundogan, Claudio Brava and Nolito were signed for a collective 200m € and the club have had a major make over. However, his biggest influence has been on the training pitch, where the work is said to have been on another level and it is easy to see that on the pitch, we are only four games in, but at times and in each, although perhaps not yet for 90 minutes, they have played football the like of which we have not seen before in the Premier League. It might seem very early to say that, but you only had to watch the opening 45 minutes of the Manchester derby on Saturday, through which they totally outclassed United, to realise how good they are, or rather, can be and this is only just the very beginning. The effect he has had on Raheem Sterling and John Stones is already apparent and tonight they will have a hungry and in form Sergio Aguero, who is serving a domestic ban, back in the line up.

    BMG are two weeks behind in terms of real match fitness, a light year away with the respective squads and whilst they will have learned plenty from a group stage appearance, they will not take much confidence from the two games with City last season, both of which they lost , conceding six goals and the Manchester side look on a higher plane right now. BMG are coming off a 3-1 defeat at newly promoted Freiburg at the weekend, they went "full strength" there, with 10 of the 11 starters who faced Leverkusen on opening day and started well enough, led at the break, but fell apart late with some shambolic defending and this has the potential to get ugly tonight.

    Manchester City -1.5 ball 2.11 asian line/Sportmarket

    4.0 for City to score four or more, something they did here at the Etihad in this fixture last season feels too big, given the offensive firepower of the hosts and how qucikly BMG crumbled on Saturday

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  17. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from four-leaf in US Open 2016   
    US Open Tennis: Agnieszka Radwanska - Ana Konjuh

    Ana Konjuh bacame the youngest player in almost a decade to win a main tour event last year, she was a great junior, winning both the Australian and US Opens, that title here in New York was hard earned and she had to beat Ostapenko, Bellis and Chirico , three players who have made a huge impact in the seniors recently, just to make the semis. She has already faced today's opponent, the world number 4, Agnieszka Radwanska, at Wimbledon in the summer, losing 9-7 in the 3rd, even that scoreline doesn't quite tell the full story, Konjuh would have won had she not picked up an injury during the match and even then had match points, including one which hit the net and hung in the air for (seemingly) seconds before deciding to drop on the "wrong" side for the young Croatian.

    We have not seen much of her since, but she won four matches in New Haven in build up and has looked good here and has been serving big, pretty much almost on a par with Naomi Broady who had Radwanska in trouble early in their second round match up, winning 30 of 40 points on first serve despite losing the second set 6-3. I have nothing but admiration for Radwanska who is the most intelligent of players and has an incredible defence and always plays to her strengths, but she is never going to blast anyone off court and I think there will be a few cheap points for Konjuh, who will mix things up and come to the net and she is not without a chance if she just does a little better with her second serve than she did at the All England Club. Agnie in three again would not surprise, but this total line could easily be covered in two and has to be the way to go.

    over 19.5 games 1.943 Pinnacle/Sportmarket Pro

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  18. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from nickel1 in US Open 2016   
    US Open Tennis: Agnieszka Radwanska - Ana Konjuh

    Ana Konjuh bacame the youngest player in almost a decade to win a main tour event last year, she was a great junior, winning both the Australian and US Opens, that title here in New York was hard earned and she had to beat Ostapenko, Bellis and Chirico , three players who have made a huge impact in the seniors recently, just to make the semis. She has already faced today's opponent, the world number 4, Agnieszka Radwanska, at Wimbledon in the summer, losing 9-7 in the 3rd, even that scoreline doesn't quite tell the full story, Konjuh would have won had she not picked up an injury during the match and even then had match points, including one which hit the net and hung in the air for (seemingly) seconds before deciding to drop on the "wrong" side for the young Croatian.

    We have not seen much of her since, but she won four matches in New Haven in build up and has looked good here and has been serving big, pretty much almost on a par with Naomi Broady who had Radwanska in trouble early in their second round match up, winning 30 of 40 points on first serve despite losing the second set 6-3. I have nothing but admiration for Radwanska who is the most intelligent of players and has an incredible defence and always plays to her strengths, but she is never going to blast anyone off court and I think there will be a few cheap points for Konjuh, who will mix things up and come to the net and she is not without a chance if she just does a little better with her second serve than she did at the All England Club. Agnie in three again would not surprise, but this total line could easily be covered in two and has to be the way to go.

    over 19.5 games 1.943 Pinnacle/Sportmarket Pro

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  19. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from CzechPunter in US Open 2016   
    US Open Tennis: Agnieszka Radwanska - Ana Konjuh

    Ana Konjuh bacame the youngest player in almost a decade to win a main tour event last year, she was a great junior, winning both the Australian and US Opens, that title here in New York was hard earned and she had to beat Ostapenko, Bellis and Chirico , three players who have made a huge impact in the seniors recently, just to make the semis. She has already faced today's opponent, the world number 4, Agnieszka Radwanska, at Wimbledon in the summer, losing 9-7 in the 3rd, even that scoreline doesn't quite tell the full story, Konjuh would have won had she not picked up an injury during the match and even then had match points, including one which hit the net and hung in the air for (seemingly) seconds before deciding to drop on the "wrong" side for the young Croatian.

    We have not seen much of her since, but she won four matches in New Haven in build up and has looked good here and has been serving big, pretty much almost on a par with Naomi Broady who had Radwanska in trouble early in their second round match up, winning 30 of 40 points on first serve despite losing the second set 6-3. I have nothing but admiration for Radwanska who is the most intelligent of players and has an incredible defence and always plays to her strengths, but she is never going to blast anyone off court and I think there will be a few cheap points for Konjuh, who will mix things up and come to the net and she is not without a chance if she just does a little better with her second serve than she did at the All England Club. Agnie in three again would not surprise, but this total line could easily be covered in two and has to be the way to go.

    over 19.5 games 1.943 Pinnacle/Sportmarket Pro

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  20. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from Kenton Schweppes in Championship, League 1 & League 2 > September   
    England League 2: Luton - Wycombe

    I was surprised that Luton Town managed to keep hold of all their promising youngsters in the transfer window, that shows great ambition , infact, they strengthened with the good looking additions of winger Alex Gilliead (Newcastle United) and left-back Jack Senior (Huddersfield Town), Gilliead played a full season at L2 last season and should hit the ground running, adding goals and assists. The Hatters now look a very strong squad and anything less than a serious promotion push is going to be viewed as failure. They are a big club at this level and I spoke about that ahead of a trip to Dagenham last season under old boss John Still .........

    "Town are a very big club in League 2 terms and simply have to be, at the very least, challenging for promotion, a run of four games without a win ( five in all competitions) has left them down in 15th place and whilst that is "only" six points adrift of the play off spots, this feels very much like draw a line in the sand time and a match the Hatters have to find a way to win.

    In comparison, Daggers are tiny, operate on small crowds and a similar sized budget and the fact that they have been a Football League club for nine years and even enjoyed one single season in League 1 is almost solely down to one man and that is Luton boss John Still, who vitually single handedly overhauled the club from top to bottom, saved them from relegation out of the Conference, took them into the FL and then even L1 and did so on a playing budget most managers would have looked at and thought it was the expenses for the ball boys and tea ladies ! Daggers have always stayed within budget, which meant even by Conference standards it is small and they have to sell to even stick to that and what Still did at the club was simply amazing. He knows everyone at Dagenham and I am talking about everyone, including probably half the supporters by name, actually Still knows almost everyove in football, but his heart, or at least a large part of it remains in this corner of East London and speaking about returning this week, it has been almost too painful and he said he just wants to go, play and leave as soon as possible. I guess it is like seeing an old girlfriend you still have feelings for .

    It is not his first return, Town took four points from the h2h meetings last year, drawing 0-0 here, where they played an hour with ten men following a hotly disputed sending off and were later denied what looked a stonewall penalty, that and Town's need for all three points will ensure that there is not too much sympathy, at least on the pitch and the visiting supporters who are going to form at least 50% (1,200 advance tickets sold) of the crowd, can make the trip home happy. Team news is not overly important, the Town squad is on another level, but it is worth noting that Craig Mackail-Smith has busted a gut to get fit for this, he was more or less the first signing that Still made at Dagenham, joining from what was basically 8th tier football (!), he went on to make two big money moves and a good living from football and turned down the offer of League 1 football from at least two clubs to play for his former boss once more. CMS is desperate to play one more time at tiny Victoria Road.

    Town have been getting into good positions, but not seeing out games well, they have led in two of the last three and were level entering injury time in the other and yet only took one point from those games and that has to stop, a free midweek and the extra day to prepare solely for this will have helped after six games inside 21 days previously and I feel we will see a very focused performance from the visitors today."

    Town won that 2-0 ,but Still didn't see the season out and is now back at Daggers, his replacement Nathan Jones had the second half of 15-16 to sort things out and has had plenty of time to build, he has two years left on his contract, but probably knows it has to be this season he makes his mark and he has been given big support by the board.

    Wycombe are struggling financially and have not been done andy favours by a massive injury crisis, despite winning in the EPL Trophy in midweek, the squad named highlighted their issues, they could not fill the bench, it included two players they dare not risk and their 43 yo head coach Gareth Ainsworth, who was one of two substituions made.They have around a third of their squad unavailable and they will struggle to take anything from this fixture.

    Luton Town -0.5 ball 1.98 asian line/Sportmarket

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  21. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from StevieDay1983 in La Liga > August 2016   
    La Liga: Espanyol - Malaga

    Malaga are in the Ajaccio mode and rarely cut loose on the road, however, Juande Ramos is back in charge and got them playing some attractive football in pre season, when they scored a lot of goals, they struggled to break down an Osasuna side who came with only a point in mind last week and had to settle for 1-1, but the overall performance certainly offered promise and I do expect to see a more adventurous approach from them this season. That will go double and treble for Espanyol who opened with a 6-4 loss (!) at Sevilla, tough to score four on the road and not get a point, but I doubt they will abandon their attacking principles and will instead take heart from their offensive performance. The signings of Leo Baptistao, Pablo Piatti, José Manuel Jurado and José Antonio Reyes hardly hinted at a team who were going to sit back in any game, they are looking to strengthen defensively before the window closes, but right now look full of goals at one end and leaky at the other, I suspect they will be fun to watch all season and odds for this to provide some of that entertainment look on the big side.

    The first round of games saw 40 goals , there were only 32 on opening day in the previous two seasons combined, the increased and more equal distribution of television money in Spain has meant increased pressure on teams to entertain and I feel that last week might not just be a blip, but an ongoing trend. There could mean value for us in early season if that is the case and before the oddsmakers fully catch up.

    over 2.5 goals 2.38 asian line/Sportmarket

     
  22. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from Kunal888 in Champions League 2016/17 Play-Off Round   
    UEFA Champions League: Hapoel Beer Sheva - Celtic FC

    Celtic won the first leg 5-2 and looked out of sight at one stage at 3-0 early in that tie and on another night could have won by five, however and equally, they could have crumbled at 3-2 and again when the Israeli side were denied a penalty later in the game. We have seen them do so before and Brendan Rodgers, the head coach of the Scottish champions, said yesterday that those involved in last season's surrender to Malmo at this stage of the competition will not be unnerved by that disappointment. Adding:"I think a lot has been made of what's happened in the past and I've always said you have to embrace failure." He spent half the interview talking about this and for me,the loss in Sweden, and some other big collapses in the Champions League in recent campaigns, are clearly playing on his mind.

    I think that this will be a very different game, Celtic were very fortunate not to lose at Astana, where they fought a rearguard action for most of the 90 minutes and they have won just 9 of 62 , including 2 of their last 14, away starts in Europe and have kept just two clean sheets in the last 20 ( in Azerbaijan and Iceland).Hapoel Beer Sheva have great confidence from their first domestic title in 40 years last season and head coach Barak Bakhar feels there is still life in this and rested key players for tonight in their league opener on Saturday.

    HBS are a special team and have very much a them against us mentality domestically, Beersheba being in the "wilderness " of the South and their title win last season was described as "doing a Leicester City", which is a phrase we are going to hear far too much of ! Celtic can lose by 2 and still progress and I think they will look to keep this tight, which they are ill equipped and unused to doing and I expect the host to edge this narrowly and both teams to celebrate come the end of 90 minutes. The visitors also conceded two goals quickly from three up against St Johnstone at the weekend and sitting on a lead is not their forte.

    Hapoel Beer Sheva -0.25 ball 2.07 asian line/Sportmarket

     
  23. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from liquidglass in Wimbledon 2016   
    Wimbledon: Tomas Berdych - Andy Murray

    Andy Murray also took five sets to find a way past the hugely popular Jo Wilfried Tsonga, he did it almost in reverse fashion, taking the first two sets and looking likely to win in three and was then a break up in the fourth, before running away with the decider.

    Berdych has passed under the radar this fortnight to reach his second Wimbledon semi and sixth last four slam appearance of his career. That is not a fantastic record for a player who has been a "contender" for a decade and he is often cited in "best player never to have won a slam " lists. He did win his previous semi here , beating Djokovic in three (!) , he had already seen off Federer in four in the quarters, but lost in the final in straight sets to Nadal. That was a hugely impressive run and who was going to beat Nole, FedEx and Rafa back to back in any slam tournament in 2010 !

    You could argue that overall he has underperformed in those semis, but in addition to beating Djoko in 3, he took Robin Soderling who was playing out of his skin to five at Roland Garros, lost to Murray in NY ( 9-7 in 4th set tie break), to Wawrinka in 4 sets when Stan won his first slam in Australia , losing the last two on tie breaks and then to Murray in four, again in Melbourne. That was probably the easiest defeat, but he battled hard in each and all those defeats could have worked out a little differently.

    Murray leads the h2h 8-6 but was behind in this series until early last year, the British player has won four in a row since, starting with that win at the Aussie Open and he has taken the last nine sets and all without the need of a tie break and it might be that he now has Berdych's number. But this is their first ever meeting on grass and the first time since his debut slam semi that Berdych has arrived in the last 4 without having met a top 5 player in the last 8 and he could have a freshness edge, especially after Murray's battle with JWT and runs to finals in Madrid, Rome, Roland Garros and Queen's all back to back and in build up . If Berdych is not mentally sacred by those recent h2h defeats, this should be close and I would not totally rule out an upset.

    I think there is a little ill feeling, if not with Murray, then with his coach Ivan Lendl, Berdych said “I approached Ivan when he stopped with Andy the first time and asked him to work with me. “He basically said that he doesn't have the time and he didn't want to be involved in tennis. "Then he came back to Andy, so that's how it is.” That can always be a motivating factor, but I doubt he needs it.

    The Czech player has looked very relaxed and spent an hour or two with the people queuing at Wimbledon last week and it feels like there is very little pressure on him, other than what he puts on himself and he seems that he is unwilling to do that .....“At the end of the day, the most important thing is that you can stand and say, okay, I've tried everything that I possibly can, I've done all what was there . “If you make it one day, great; if not, what can you do? “I mean, there are so many other guys that they have never reached a final, at least. "So that's how it is. "I still have some time. "I'm having another good run and I will try to continue that.”

    I think the total games line is set too low at 36, that could be covered in three sets and Berdych has won at least one in all five previous slam semis and in three slam meetings with Murray.

    over 36 games 1.917 Pinnacle Sports /Sportmarket Pro. I feel pretty much all the "over" lines are set too low

     
  24. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from CzechPunter in Wimbledon 2016   
    Wimbledon: Tomas Berdych - Andy Murray

    Andy Murray also took five sets to find a way past the hugely popular Jo Wilfried Tsonga, he did it almost in reverse fashion, taking the first two sets and looking likely to win in three and was then a break up in the fourth, before running away with the decider.

    Berdych has passed under the radar this fortnight to reach his second Wimbledon semi and sixth last four slam appearance of his career. That is not a fantastic record for a player who has been a "contender" for a decade and he is often cited in "best player never to have won a slam " lists. He did win his previous semi here , beating Djokovic in three (!) , he had already seen off Federer in four in the quarters, but lost in the final in straight sets to Nadal. That was a hugely impressive run and who was going to beat Nole, FedEx and Rafa back to back in any slam tournament in 2010 !

    You could argue that overall he has underperformed in those semis, but in addition to beating Djoko in 3, he took Robin Soderling who was playing out of his skin to five at Roland Garros, lost to Murray in NY ( 9-7 in 4th set tie break), to Wawrinka in 4 sets when Stan won his first slam in Australia , losing the last two on tie breaks and then to Murray in four, again in Melbourne. That was probably the easiest defeat, but he battled hard in each and all those defeats could have worked out a little differently.

    Murray leads the h2h 8-6 but was behind in this series until early last year, the British player has won four in a row since, starting with that win at the Aussie Open and he has taken the last nine sets and all without the need of a tie break and it might be that he now has Berdych's number. But this is their first ever meeting on grass and the first time since his debut slam semi that Berdych has arrived in the last 4 without having met a top 5 player in the last 8 and he could have a freshness edge, especially after Murray's battle with JWT and runs to finals in Madrid, Rome, Roland Garros and Queen's all back to back and in build up . If Berdych is not mentally sacred by those recent h2h defeats, this should be close and I would not totally rule out an upset.

    I think there is a little ill feeling, if not with Murray, then with his coach Ivan Lendl, Berdych said “I approached Ivan when he stopped with Andy the first time and asked him to work with me. “He basically said that he doesn't have the time and he didn't want to be involved in tennis. "Then he came back to Andy, so that's how it is.” That can always be a motivating factor, but I doubt he needs it.

    The Czech player has looked very relaxed and spent an hour or two with the people queuing at Wimbledon last week and it feels like there is very little pressure on him, other than what he puts on himself and he seems that he is unwilling to do that .....“At the end of the day, the most important thing is that you can stand and say, okay, I've tried everything that I possibly can, I've done all what was there . “If you make it one day, great; if not, what can you do? “I mean, there are so many other guys that they have never reached a final, at least. "So that's how it is. "I still have some time. "I'm having another good run and I will try to continue that.”

    I think the total games line is set too low at 36, that could be covered in three sets and Berdych has won at least one in all five previous slam semis and in three slam meetings with Murray.

    over 36 games 1.917 Pinnacle Sports /Sportmarket Pro. I feel pretty much all the "over" lines are set too low

     
  25. Like
    clubgowi got a reaction from CzechPunter in Wimbledon 2016   
    WIMBLEDON: Simona Halep - Madison Keys

    Keys has been taken to three sets in her last two wins (Kirsten Flipkens/ Alize Cornet), but ran away with the decider in each, never really looked in any trouble, has been serving big and hitting an enormous amount of winners and looks to have made a lot of progress in the mental side of her game. She is taking a little more time before the big points and composing herself and she has clearly made some progress already under Thomas Hogstedt and his influence should really be seen in the bigger tactical battles which are more likely to come this week and hopefully he can get her to just play a shot or two more on occasion, before going for the "winner".

    Simona Halep's record at Wimbledon is quite poor and this is just the second time in seven visits that she has made it beyond R2, there was a run to the semis in breakthrough year of 2014 and she only really beat one player really comfortable on the surface in that run and has not met anyone who could do much damage to her this year, today will be a real test. Halep is 3-6 on grass against taller players ranked inside the top 50 and is 6-7 against top 100. Keys has won 13 matches in a row against players who are under 1.68m, which is exactly Haleps height, but it does mean she matches up well against shorter players and she is 13-2 on grass v all shorter players with the two defeats coming against Radwanska and going to three very close sets and Keys is a much better all round player now, than when she played those.


    Madison Keys -1.5 games 1.97 Pinnacle Sports/ Sportmarket Pro
     
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